Bobbin Work made Beautiful

With so many beautiful decorative stitches built-in to our Janome sewing machines, we tend to focus on what the needle thread is doing on the right side of the fabric, especially since there’s sew many beautiful decorative threads available to use. However, did you know you can also achieve some fun, decorative effects by flipping your fabric over and using heavier decorative threads or floss in the bobbin? The technique is appropriately known as Bobbin Work, and our fabulous Janome Canada Educator, Celine, will show you how to set-up your sewing machine to produce some fun, beautiful effects LIVE at 3pm Eastern, today, Wednesday, August 4th in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook group.

Celine will share of her secrets for success, but one of the ingredients is using the Janome Low Tension/Blue Dot Bobbin Holder, available for many Janome machines. Check with your Janome Dealer to ensure you get the right one for your machine. For example, the Janome Continental M7 has one specific to that machine.

See the source image
Photo courtesy of Threads Magazine

Celine will be LIVE at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook group every Wednesday in August, so be sure to Follow their page, and Follow us here at Janome Life so you don’t miss the notifications!

Don’t worry if you can’t join-in LIVE at the time, all the presentations will be stored under the VIDEOS tab on the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page, so you may watch whenever, and as many times as you wish!

Don’t have a Facebook account? Again, don’t worry as all of Celine’s demonstrations will be also available on the Janome HQ You Tube channel under the Facebook LIVE playlist.

Happy Sewing!

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We Interrupt this Regularly Scheduled Broadcast……….

If you’re a regular follower of Janome Life, you know that Wednesday mornings begin with a post about the online Janome HQ Instagram @janomehq LIVE series “Janome’s Magical Machine Mystery Tour” which features a different machine in the Janome line, or a fabulous partner product, like Arrow chairs, and Daylight lamps, which compliment those machines!

Unfortunately, sometime scheduling conflicts arise, so there will be NO Instagram LIVE this afternoon, but I’ll be back LIVE NEXT WEEK, Wednesday, August 11th at 1pm Eastern.

Until then, you can review ALL Janome HQ presentations through IGTV on our @janomehq Instagram page, or on the Janome HQ You Tube channel!

JMMMT Artwork 2

Follow us on the Janome HQ Facebook page to see what’s new at our Janome Canada headquarters, our Janome HQ, and click HERE for more information about our ONLINE classes!

Write me at classes@janome-canada.com (copy and paste in a new browser if needed) for more information about eventual on-site classes (when it’s safe) at The Janome Sewing and Learning Centre in Oakville, ON; Janome Canada’s Head Quarters.

Happy Sewing and #sharethejanomelove!

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Mark your calendars! August’s Facebook LIVE presentations!

Back by popular demand, Janome Canada Educator, Celine Ross will be LIVE in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook group every Wednesday in August at 3pm Eastern to demonstrate some fun, and fanciful techniques to help you get the most from your Janome machines and accessories!

Wednesday, August 4th, Celine will demonstrate Bobbin Work in the sewing machine, which is another great use for the Janome Low Tension/Blue Dot Bobbin Holder, available for many Janome machines. Check with your Janome Dealer to ensure you get the right one for your machine. For example, the Janome Continental M7 has one specific to that machine.

See the source image
Photo courtesy of Threads Magazine

Wednesday, August 11th, learn the classic, heirloom sewing technique of Fagoting; joining two pieces of fabric together with a decorative stitch to produce a beautiful, delicate effect. A great high-end, designer detail to add to any garment, or project.

There’s LOTS of fun, inspirational posts to be found on Pinterest!

Wednesday, August 18th, Celine will be back to show you Bobbin Work with your embroidery machine! Add a new dimension to your designs using the colorful array of heavier threads, thin yarns, or floss. Learn how to set up your machine for success!

Looks familiar, doesn’t it? This quilting design is built-in to many Janome embroidery machines. Add a new, fun, decorative and dimensional twist using the Bobbin Work technique!

Wednesday, August 25th, Celine wraps up the month with a demonstration of applique done the easy and ingenious way using Cutwork Needles in the embroidery machine. Yes! Cutting Needles in your embroidery machine! Celine will share all her secrets LIVE at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook group.

Cut Work Needles for your embroidery machine!

Don’t worry if you can’t join-in LIVE at the time, all the presentations will be stored under the VIDEOS tab on the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page, so you may watch whenever, and as many times as you wish!

Don’t have a Facebook account? Again, don’t worry as all of Celine’s demonstrations will be also available on the Janome HQ You Tube channel under the Facebook LIVE playlist.

Happy Sewing!

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What is the Elongation function?

Yes indeed, WHAT IS ELONGATION FUNCTION? Sounds fancy and it is. Many of our Janome models have this function but you may be unaware of the creative fun sitting right there in front of you…….so here’s a heads up for you!

Purple satin stitches: top row elongated 3 times and combined with a fun stitch in the Play category. Bottom purple row is one of the satin stitches elongated 5 times and combined in a progression.
This is just a test sewing piece. If it had been for a project, I would have extended the orange and green stitching to match. The orange stitching is satin stitching without elongation.

Does your Janome sewing machine have satin stitches?

Does your machine have a button or an icon with the letter E?

Did you flip through the contents page of your Instruction manual and find a section called Elongation of satin stitches or something similar?

I’m not going to give a long list of all the Janome models that have the capability to elongate satin stitches without reducing the satin stitch quality – that is the closeness of the stitches or stitch length. That would be a rather long list and I’m not sure I would be able to offer a complete list anyway. So look in your manual, look for the E button or icon and if you find it, voila, you have the elongation function on your Janome!

So how do you use it? I made a video recently about the Janome Border Guide foot and here is the link to this on our Janome Life You Tube channel. Go to approximately the 20 min 41 second mark for the explanation of how to do elongation as it was part of this video since I love to use elongated satin stitches with my Janome Border guide foot. Of course, you can watch the whole video if you wish. 

I love using this function as it adds some interesting and different options to the satin stitch menu. The BEST suggestion I have for you is to experiment with different satin stitches using the X1, X2,  X3, X4 & X5 options. Yes, you can take a satin stitch and elongate it FIVE times its default length. PLAY time!!

A couple of hints and tips:

  1. Use a stabilizer. It you do not, you will run the risk of having your fabric pucker and you will not be happy with that look! Choose a suitable stabilizer. For example, if you do not want the hassle of picking out all the bits of tearaway on the back (which can also pull and distort your stitching), select a water soluble stabilizer or an iron-on interfacing type product which will stay there. DO try our Madeira Stabilizer Starter Set which has a sample of TWELVE different Madeira stabilizers as well as a booklet with lots of good information about each type included in the pack. Janome Canada distributes Madeira to all our Janome Canada and Elna Canada dealers so ask your dealer about the STARTER SET Art# 9449. Buy one starter set , or buy more than 1 as it is an easy and low cost way of trying out a bunch of different top quality stabilizers without having to spend lots of money buying many rolls of stabilizers you may not have tried or may not use often. Win-win in my opinion!
  2. Decide what thread you want to use: you can use regular sewing thread or cotton sewing thread but we suggest you might like to try an embroidery thread, Polyester or rayon, which gives an attractive shine or lustre to your stitches. Janome distributes a range of embroidery threads across Canada, so ask your Janome dealer about Madeira Polyneon (available in several great gift boxes and treasure chests) as well as Hilos Iris Ultra-brite poly thread, AND our Janome brand of polyester embroidery thread.  We stand behind the quality of all of these thread brands!

    Madeira Polyneon embroidery thread Smart box

  3. Always use the correct needle for the task at hand: Ask yourself what thread and fabric are you using? We suggest using trying a Janome red tip needle which has a larger eye and a nice sharp point so you’ll get good quality stitching and less thread breakage.  Always remember to change your needles often. 8-10 hours max per needle is recommended.

4. Did you know that you can combine your elongated satin stitches with different stitches as a combo? Many of our mid-range Janome sewing machine models and up have the ability to do stitch combinations. Check out your manual and have some creative fun; your imagination is your only limit if your machine has these features!

5. You can adjust the settings of your stitches if you wish. I often like to reduce my stitch length to 0.3 or 0.35mm so that the satin stitches are closer together. OR, you can opt for using a slightly thicker thread in the needle? Perhaps a 28; 30 or 40 weight thread.

6. When doing satin stitching, it is always recommended that you use the Satin Stitch ( F ) Foot which has a channel on the under side of the foot through which the stitches can pass without getting “hung up”, as can happen if you use a foot without a channel. So do switch from the regular A foot to the Satin Stitch Foot (F for fun!) for best results. Click on the link HERE for more about the F feet – Regular closed toe F Foot, Open Toe F2 Foot and Border Guide Foot FB. Check with your Janome Dealer to ensure you get the correct size foot for your machine. 

7. You will need to use the zig-zag needle plate as you will be doing stitches that swing from side to side and you don’t want to break a needle on a straight stitch plate. Many of our Janome models have build in reminders for you to change the needle plate as the straight stitch plate greys out all stitches except straight stitches. In case your model does not have this feature, take care you have the correct needle plate on the machine before you start stitching! 

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It’s Hot Out There

Welcome to summer everyone! I live in Chilliwack, British Columbia and we have been getting some pretty hot weather. It was 42 degrees on my back deck, which is too hot for my liking. Even the air conditioning unit in my home couldn’t keep up. So I decided to make some neck coolers. These are so simple to make.

All you need is 5 inch strip of fabric WOF (width of fabric) and some water absorption granules.

I picked these up at a gardening store, and unless you are making neck coolers as a business, this container will last a very long time.

Fold the strip of fabric in half lengthwise.

Mark the center and 8 inches on either side. Sew from the 8 inch mark to the end of the strip and the short end. Repeat on the other end.

Turn right side out and press. Mark the center, 4 inches either side of center and 8 inches either side of center.

Sew down at the center mark, 4 inch off center marks and 8 inch off center marks. Make sure that you back stitch at the beginning and end of stitching.

This creates 4 pockets that the granules go into.

You will put 1/4 of a teaspoon of granules in each pocket. This is not a typo, only 1/4 of a teaspoon. I decided that it wasn’t enough and added more. Don’t make this mistake! When you put into the water, it swells ALOT, so you only need 1/4 of a teaspoon!

You can use pins, but I find the clips keep the granules in the pockets better while sewing.

Sew across to close all the pockets. Make sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of stitching.

Place cooler in a bowl of water. I like to put the bowl in the fridge. This keeps it really cold!

When the cooler gets warm, either spray with water or put it back in the bowl with water. These are great to keep on hand. During the winter I let them dry on the counter and put in the drawer until the next heat wave. Another great use of these is if you suffer with hot flashes…they work great when you are struggling with night sweats, too!

Happy Sewing!!

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Embroidered Organizer Bags

Mask mandates are different all across the country, but I am just prepping for my first road trip in 18 months and wanted something that would organize my clean and used cloth masks since I live in a province where there’s still indoor mask requirements. Of course, this clean/to wash idea can have many other uses, as well!

I love using the Janome Skyline S9 and the free Janome embroidery apps for these kind of projects.

To design the text for the organizer bags, I used the Janome AcuEdit app’s built in fonts. It was easy to develop my design, then resize and reposition the text.

The Janome AcuSetter app allows me to position my design exactly where I want it on my fabric.

First I look a photo of the fabric and lined up the hoop.

From there I can position my embroidery design using the horizontal and vertical adjustments.

And sending the finished, perfectly positioned design to the machine is easy using the WIFI capabilities of the Janome Skyline 9 (and Janome MC15000 Quiltmaker, too!)

I wanted a colour that would contrast with the burgundy fabric and chose this gold metallic Maderia thread. I sometimes worry about using metallics in a sewing machine, but this Maderia is a DREAM to work with and I never have any problems.

I just love how that metallic thread pops!

Since I wanted to keep this design simple, this was just a fold over bag with a flap to keep the contents enclosed.

I switched to the HP foot and plate (an optional accessory set for the Indigo Skyline S9 and UPDATED original blue Skyline S9) to complete the bag. It does a great job at straight stitch sewing and can navigate bulky seams with ease.

I can think of a lot of different projects to make with this kind of idea in mind. A day-bag for my daughter for daycare for any clothes that might get dirty during crafts or lunch time. Or an organizer bags for the gym or travel. Bigger versions would be great for a beach day for bathing suits and towels!

And of course, these can have options other than the fold over flap that I used, zippers and draw-string bags would both be great ideas. There are so many possibilities!

What summer projects are you sewing up right now?

Blog courtesy of Janome Canada Artisan Trina Gallop
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A Reminder: Janome Sewing Machines Facebook LIVE at 3pm Eastern – Embellishment is SEW easy with the Janome Beading Foot!

The Janome Beading Foot is one of those fabulous, multi-purpose optional presser feet which is available for almost all Janome machines! It’s a snap on presser foot, so be sure to tell your fabulous Janome Dealer if you have a 9mm, 7mm or 5mm – this refers to the opening in the zig-zag needle plate on your machine. It’s important to use the foot holder, or ankle, which came with your machine and to get the correct snap on presser foot so it lines up correctly with the feed dogs.

Some machines, like the 9mm machines; Continental M7, MC15000, Skyline S9, for example, have the option of BOTH a wide groove and narrow groove beading foot available, which means even more fun and versatility! Yay!

Janome Beading Foot makes sewing a string of beads, or yarns a breeze!

Janome Canada educator, Celine Ross, will be LIVE Wednesday, July 28th at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook Group to show just how fun, easy and versatile this foot is to use, and the results are perfect every time!

Celine has been LIVE at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook Group each Wednesday in July to demonstrate some of the most popular and multi-functional optional presser feet.

Can’t tune-in LIVE at 3pm Eastern? Don’t worry! All the Facebook LIVE presentations are available to view under the VIDEOS tab on the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page to watch whenever convenient for you. Watch and review as often as you wish!

Be sure to check our Janome Accessories Guide for more information, and the very informative Janome Presser Foot Workbook. and addendums, available from your Janome Dealer.

Janome Presser Foot Workbook
Janome Presser Foot Workbook

Also, check out this wonderful review of the Janome Presser Foot Workbook from our friends at Sew4Home., and of course, consult with your Janome Dealer!

For even MORE presser foot fun, in June, Celine had previously presented the Janome PinTuck Foot, both wide and narrow groove, available to view HERE and, showed how to create a beautiful Scallop Edge, available to view HERE.

Don’t have a Facebook account? Again, don’t worry! Celine’s presentations will be available on the Janome HQ You Tube channel, so you may watch and learn whenever you wish!

Happy Sewing!

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We Interrupt this Regularly Scheduled Broadcast……….

If you’re a regular follower of Janome Life, you know that Wednesday mornings begin with a post about the online Janome HQ Instagram @janomehq LIVE series “Janome’s Magical Machine Mystery Tour” which features a different machine in the Janome line, or a fabulous partner product, like Arrow chairs, and Daylight lamps, which compliment those machines!

Unfortunately, sometime scheduling conflicts arise, so there will be NO Instagram LIVE this afternoon. HOWEVER, you can review ALL Janome HQ presentations through IGTV on our @janomehq Instagram page, or on the Janome HQ You Tube channel!

JMMMT Artwork 2

Follow us on the Janome HQ Facebook page to see what’s new at our Janome Canada headquarters, our Janome HQ, and click HERE for more information about our ONLINE classes!

Write me at classes@janome-canada.com (copy and paste in a new browser if needed) for more information about eventual on-site classes (when it’s safe) at The Janome Sewing and Learning Centre in Oakville, ON; Janome Canada’s Head Quarters.

Happy Sewing and #sharethejanomelove!

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Embellishment is SEW easy with the Janome Beading Foot!

The Janome Beading Foot is one of those fabulous, multi-purpose optional presser feet which is available for almost all Janome machines! It’s a snap on presser foot, so be sure to tell your fabulous Janome Dealer if you have a 9mm, 7mm or 5mm – this refers to the opening in the zig-zag needle plate on your machine. It’s important to use the foot holder, or ankle, which came with your machine and to get the correct snap on presser foot so it lines up correctly with the feed dogs.

Some machines, like the 9mm machines; Continental M7, MC15000, Skyline S9, for example, have the option of BOTH a wide groove and narrow groove beading foot available, which means even more fun and versatility! Yay!

Janome Beading Foot makes sewing a string of beads, or yarns a breeze!

Janome Canada educator, Celine Ross, will be LIVE Wednesday, July 28th at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook Group to show just how fun, easy and versatile this foot is to use, and the results are perfect every time!

Celine has been LIVE at 3pm Eastern in the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook Group each Wednesday in July to demonstrate some of the most popular and multi-functional optional presser feet.

Can’t tune-in LIVE at 3pm Eastern? Don’t worry! All the Facebook LIVE presentations are available to view under the VIDEOS tab on the Janome Sewing Machines Facebook page to watch whenever convenient for you. Watch and review as often as you wish!

Be sure to check our Janome Accessories Guide for more information, and the very informative Janome Presser Foot Workbook. and addendums, available from your Janome Dealer.

Janome Presser Foot Workbook
Janome Presser Foot Workbook

Also, check out this wonderful review of the Janome Presser Foot Workbook from our friends at Sew4Home., and of course, consult with your Janome Dealer!

For even MORE presser foot fun, in June, Celine had previously presented the Janome PinTuck Foot, both wide and narrow groove, available to view HERE and, showed how to create a beautiful Scallop Edge, available to view HERE.

Don’t have a Facebook account? Again, don’t worry! Celine’s presentations will be available on the Janome HQ You Tube channel, so you may watch and learn whenever you wish!

Happy Sewing!

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Serger TLC

No matter which Janome Serger you may have, or perhaps are thinking of acquiring, a little TLC on a regular basis will ensure it continues to deliver the top-quality results we desire and have come to expect.

 

We’re all likely a little guilty of being sew busy making our projects; often working on tight deadlines, that we don’t always clean and maintain our machines as often as we should. Before beginning a new project, it’s a great idea to take a few extra minutes to give your serger a little tune-up so it stays performing in tip-top condition. Your machine Instruction Manual is a great place to start, so be sure to flip to the back where you’ll always find good tips and tricks. If you’ve misplaced your manual, check out the Manuals tab on the Janome.CA website. 

 

Cleaning: Lint; all those little wispy-s cut off from the fabric’s edge when the upper knife blade is engaged, needs to be brushed out regularly from the loopers and from around the feed dogs. Remove the needle plate to do a thorough deep clean. If left to build up, the lint will become compacted over time and it will definitely impact the feeding power and performance of your serger. How often you do so depends on how often you use your machine, and what type of fabric you’re using. Cotton flannel, for example, will produce more lint than a firmly woven polyester fabric. 

Try to get into the habit of brushing out the lint after each project using the lint brush which came with your machine. Your Janome Dealer likely has other brushes available, as well, as you can never have too many! Avoid bristles which are too stiff though; nothing with wire in them, as you don’t want to scratch the metal parts, which could end catching and collecting even more lint. A firm, but soft bristle brush works best. The nylon bristle brush pictured below is quite inexpensive and widely available. 

Click HERE for a Janome Canada Instagram Live presentation on Serger Care and Maintenance, and, for more about the various models of Janome sergers and some of the fun, time-saving presser feet and attachments available for your serger, check out the “Janome Serger School” playlist on the Janome HQ You Tube channel

Brushing out lint from around the cutting knives will also help maintain your machine’s performance. This is basically where all the action of a serger happens. If your fabric is not feeding properly, not cutting smoothly and cleanly, and seems to be chewing up the fabric’s edge, look for compacted lint around the upper knife, particularly at the base next to the lower knife blade, as indicated in the photo below. Consult your Instruction Manual on how to disengage and lower the upper knife so you can pass your brush around the base and in between the upper and lower knife blades.

The yellow arrow points to upper knife blade. The orange arrow points to the lower knife blade.

Oiling Tips: We often get asked many questions about when and how to oil our Janome machines. You wouldn’t drive your car for many years without oiling, so the same is true with your serger (and sewing machine, for that matter). It may eventually seize-up if you don’t oil it properly.

Your machine’s Instruction Manual is a great place to start. Some machines, like the Janome AT2000D, for example, comes with a vial of oil and has specific instructions in the manual of where and how to apply the oil. For all sergers though, there’s a few things to consider.

  1. Check with your dealer or authorized service technician for what’s the best/correct oil for a serger. Did you know Janome has their own brand of Janome Sewing Machine oil? 
  2. If you oil too much and/or too often, that is just as bad as too little/ never. The oil will attract all the fluff like a magnet and grime will build up pretty quickly.
  3. If you hardly ever use your serger, the oil will dry up faster than if you use your serger regularly. Think about it this way; if you park your car outside your house but only get into it to drive once every 2 -3 years, would you expect it to work well? You’d definitely want to take it in for a good service first, so, if you last used your serger several years ago, it’s definitely time to oil!
  4. If you serge regularly, it’s a good idea to oil after each thorough deep cleaning. 
  5. On most sergers, there’s usually two points on the upper looper shaft which need oil the most. If in doubt, look at the diagram located on the machine, and note the arrows in the photo below. 

Arrows show where to oil your serger. Your serger may be slightly different to this one so check with your dealer where your oiling points are.

Needles: At one time or another, we’re all likely guilty of forgetting to change out our sewing machine needles as often as we should, probably even more so with our sergers. 

Be sure to check your Instruction Manual and check with your Janome Dealer to make sure you get the correct needles for your machine.  Many of our newer models of Janome sergers have very convenient stickers on the face of the machine, right above the needle area, so we see that constant reminder at a glance. For examples, some of our sergers and coverhem machines require a EL needle (which is elongated as the EL suggests). It’s essential to use these as the looper threads may not get picked up if the needles are too short, which will cause skipped stitches and you won’t be happy with that.

The size and type of needle is usually determined by your project needs. The smallest size needle you should use in a serger is size 70/10. The average is usually a 75/11. You need a sturdy needle in your serger because of it’s high speed. If the needle is too thin; too fine, the could easily deflect and break. Conversely, using a needle larger than a 90/14 will likely effect the clearance between the loopers, and effect stitch quality. Again, always double-check your machine’s Instruction Manual to see what’s recommended for your specific machine.

Be sure to inspect the needles in your machine regularly. You don’t want to try serging with bent needles! When to change them will depend on how often you’re using the machine, and how thick/ what type of fabric you’re using. Serger needles generally last longer than sewing machine needles, but, just like with food in the refrigerator, when in doubt, throw it out! 

Service: To keep your serger in tip-top condition for many, many years to come, take your machine in for a good service by your authorized Janome service technician. The general rule is once a year – with regular housekeeping at home in between. If you’ve had any issues running over a pin by mistake, for example, and perhaps nicked the knife blade, or are getting skipped stitches, you’ll definitely need to take it in. 

For tips using pins safely with a serger, and for pinning alternatives, check out the Janome HQ Instagram Live featuring the NEW Janome 793 PG Anniversary Special Edition Serger

Thread: There’s great variety with the types and weights of thread; even floss and fine yarns you can use in your serger, particularly in the upper and/or lower looper since they go around the fabric, not through it like the needle threads. For more on threading tips, check out this video on the Janome HQ You Tube channel.  One of our favourites at Janome Canada and available from your Janome Dealer is Madeira AeroLock; premium polyester serger thread, low lint, available in a rainbow array of colors, and a convenient box of the most popular neutrals; 4 mini-king cones of each color. 

For more about the many models of Janome Sergers available, visit out Janome. CA website and, as always, check with our Janome Dealers!

Happy Serging!

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